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Will You Join Me For a Sugar Free January 2020?

Woman in a plaid shirt holding a Christmas tin.

It’s that time of year again! After the craziness of the holidays, I’m always so ready for a reset. Sugar Free January is an amazing tool to help me get my sugar cravings back to a normal level. It isn’t about restricting or controlling. SFJ is about setting a tone for the year and helping your body detox from the holiday sugar indulgence. There’s no shame in eating extra sugar around the holidays! But it may not be the best idea for your health to eat that way all year long.


The beautiful thing about Sugar Free January is the ability to adapt it to fit your personal needs. There’s no judging about your choices, and no shaming if you make mistakes! You can decide just how strict you want to be.

My Personal Sugar Free January 2020 Rules:

Since I’m breastfeeding Anya ATM, I’m not going to be super strict this year. My ground rules are:

  • Cut out all highly processed forms of sugar. Honey, maple syrup, sucanat, palm sugar, etc. are okay in small quantities.
  • Do not sweeten drinks (cocoa, matcha, tea, coffee, etc.).
  • The challenge starts on January 2nd and ends February 1st.

If You Want to Join In, You Can Totally Make Your Own Rules!

For example, you may want to cut out only the super processed forms of sugar (this is what I’m doing this year) such as white sugar, brown sugar, powdered sugar, etc. Even if you still consume honey or maple syrup you’ll probably be eating a lot healthier since you’ll have to cook the majority of the food yourself (instead of buying prepackaged cookies, for example).

Or you could cut out half of the sugar in every recipe you make. You could also just go sugar free until the weekend. Or have 2 desserts a week instead of 7, or 5 instead of 7, or 1 a day instead of 3. You could just cut out all candy and pop. Or, if you already eat a really low sugar diet, you might want to try cutting out the more sugary fruits such as bananas for 30 days. Make this challenge your own!

A Word of Warning: This is Not For the Faint of Heart!

If you’re going to be super strict and cut all forms of sugar, including honey, maple syrup, and dried fruit, you might have sugar withdrawals. I know I did back when I did my Whole30 and when I’ve done Sugar Free January in the past. But it was so worth it since it showed me how addicted to sugar I was and how it’s in EVERYTHING. Just be prepared for it to be HARD for the first week. It gets better, I promise!

So, Are You Up For the Challenge?

I highly encourage you to leave a comment below with your own personal ground rules. Getting it out in writing really helps to cement it in your mind and make a commitment. At least that’s what I’ve found.


Resources to Help You Get Through Sugar Free January:

Here are some sugar free recipes on Buttered Side Up:








Tuesday 7th of January 2020

Thank you for always being so inspiring! I have been on a no-grain challenge since Christmas ended and felt so ill the first week out that it makes me wonder what grains really do to your body! Why would you feel so sick after cutting them out? I have been pretty good about sugar consumption (but with three teenage daughters, it's not always easy!). My goal is also to start running long-distance again, because I always feel so much better when I do. Thanks again! Your posts are wonderful. :)


Thursday 2nd of January 2020

I feel like my sweet tooth is out of control. Got to figure out some rules for myself and join you (thanks for the 1 dessert a day instead of 3 inclusion, that might be me, ha!). I think I’ll start on Tuesday when I get home from my travels.


Thursday 2nd of January 2020

This sounds really interesting I may try it sometime. I am going to try only bake sourdough bread for a while. Your artisan sourdough bread is like amazing.?. My sisters and parents where moaning with delight when they tried it. I can’t believe it only has flour water and salt. No sugar yay!! Or oil or fat, but the amount of butter we put on it makes up for that. Thank you so Much for showing people who would probably be to scared to attempt sourdough attempt it. ?

Sandy Shepard

Wednesday 1st of January 2020

I'm in. No refined sugar or grains. I have plenty of sugar free, low carb treat recipes from you and others that I will not feel deprived. I overindulged since Thanksgiving and can't wait to feel better.


Tuesday 31st of December 2019

I am also breastfeeding so my rules are very similar to yours. Will limit maple syrup to use only on sugar free squash waffles! I will have to remember to always have some fruit on hand to help with cravigs!

Erica Kastner

Tuesday 31st of December 2019

Mmmm...sugar free squash waffles sound delicious! I stocked up on fruit in preparation for SFJ as well - better to eat an apple than indulge in something super sugary, or be really cranky IMO! ;)